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Electrical Discussion of preventative/corrective maintenance and other technical issues regarding your coach's electrical system.

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  #1  
Old 05-15-2013
schamp schamp is offline
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Default Lifeline Batteries

I want to share a good experience I have had buying some lifeline batteries.
I contacted Centex Batteries, LLC of Bastrop, Tx. I talked with the owner Marc Kurth. He took the time to talk with me regarding lifeline batteries and their comparison to others. No real comparison really. I had some local people try and sell me other brands but when you start checking warranties, number of cycles at 50% discharge, not even close. Even had local battery place offer lifelines but $63.00 more per battery than Centex.
The batteries in my coach (6) are lifelines and have been there for 6 to 6 1/2 years and have traveled about 42,000 miles. Most likely still pretty good.
My price for GPPL-4CT's was 278.00. I did pay some for shipping.
I checked with the Lifeline factory and Centex is one of their largest distributors and their batteries are fresh.
If you are in the market for some lifelines give them a chance to get your business. www.centexbatteries.com
I have no ownership in this company, just a customer.

Thanks.
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Old 05-15-2013
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dmurdock dmurdock is offline
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Good to know...I've never heard of LifeLine batteries AND Bastrop is about 30 min away from our ranch where the Bird is kept
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  #3  
Old 05-15-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmurdock View Post
I've never heard of LifeLine batteries
While there are plenty here who swear by other brands, LifeLine is probably the best known among the AGMs. They were stock from the factory on my current coach - not sure what year BB started shipping with Lifelines. Anybody know?
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Current: 2004 M380 Double Slide (For Sale)
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  #4  
Old 05-15-2013
jwasnewski jwasnewski is offline
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Yeah, I know folks will throw rocks at me when I get done but I am good with it.

Folks, I ain't paying **** near $300 each for a battery. Period!!!! Number of cycles to 50% discharge marketing or not. In our birds, short of going to the races, how many times are you going to be in a position, not running the generator, engine or being plugged up. That is, using your battery bank as the primary source of power to power the inverter discharging batteries accordingly. Think about it! Spend all the money you want, but what do you get?

The last set of AGM batteries in my coach cost right at $170 each and lasted eight years. They were Exide. Yeah, I know the argument; inflation.

So, I just bought six new AGM marine batteries with greater start power and more amp hours for $135 each. I expect they will last five years. If they do I am way ahead. If they do not I am still way ahead.

So, that is the way it is in Dahlonega.
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  #5  
Old 05-15-2013
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The set of Lifelines that Spencer is replacing cost me $700 for all six in January, 2007, so I've been as surprised as everyone else at what has happened to batteries.

Part of what you say also surprises me: " In our birds, short of going to the races, how many times are you going to be in a position, not running the generator, engine or being plugged up."

Maybe a west coast, east coast thing? The reason that Spencer was needing to replace those lifelines after 6 years was due to the amount of time spent on just the batteries. A minimum of a month every year at Q, plus things like our trip to Alaska. I would guess that there were close to 12 months of boondocking on those batteries, with no solar panels to help, and a larger than average amount of electronics being run.

I knew within a couple of days that I wasn't going to make it on the 6 standard (80AH) wet cell 12-volt batteries in that coach when I bought it, even though they were new. Replaced the 480AH with 660AH of 6-volt Lifelines, and it was a good deal. For me. I was very happy to find that the 3 4Ds in this one were replaced in 2010 (for over $1500), so I should get at least 4 years out of them since they don't have to double as starting batteries.
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  #6  
Old 05-16-2013
jwasnewski jwasnewski is offline
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I think my point was correct.

Part of this forum is advising folks about what is best for their Wandering house, perhaps including money to maintain the thing. If you want to boondock, very well, perhaps a set of $300 batteries is in order. Perhaps that is cheaper than diesel fuel and running the generator. Personally, I do not believe that Bluebirds were ever intended for boondocking. Far to much parasitic drag. Tents are for boondocking.

I am just saying, there are valid alternatives to battery power. You simply do not need those high powered batteries if you are plugged up constantly. I proved that with Exide batteries. And who is to say that my Exide batteries were any worse or better than those Lifelines.

Marketing is a wonderful thing. And is has nothing to do with East West. It is about money.

Jimmimy, some of the posts I read about buying a Bird cheap just does not square with the price of batteries. The batteries cost more than the coach.
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  #7  
Old 05-16-2013
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rahangman rahangman is offline
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I find myself in step with Leroy. A little over a year ago, I replaced my batteries (not Lifeline) with Dekas for the house. My Chassis batteries are Interstate installed at/by Prevost, go figure, thought they would have done Lifelines, but no. The Dekas have performed admirably but as Leroy says, I am seldom not plugged in, and if dry camping (usually when travelling) run the Gen set to recharge or just let batteries recharge off engine. Just my thoughts.
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  #8  
Old 05-16-2013
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nbedinger nbedinger is offline
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For me, Lifeline's appeal is the claim of low internal resistance--they can charge up quickly at something like 2X the battery's rated 20-hr Amps! Since I just upped my charger to 160 amps, I'm in good shape to charge an 80AH Lifeline very fast.

But in all seriousness, if I could run the generator for 30 minutes instead of 4 hours to bring my batts up each day of boondocking, I think Lifelines would pay for themselves. I have to admit, that is an extrordinary claim, I wonder if it is true?

By the way, Spencer--you must be a hard core shopper online. I've been dithering about Lifelines or Trojans, Exide or US Battery, ... for months now. A good discounted price like you found from Centexwould have made it a lot easier to decide.

--Ned



--Ned
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  #9  
Old 05-16-2013
schamp schamp is offline
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Ned,
I try and look around. I don't really have the time but hate getting taken for a ride. I don't think there is really an answer about lifelines vs something else. It's a choice. I was glad to get the lifelines. I like that they are sealed. I like that they last. I like that I don't have to fabricate new brackets to make something else fit and my cables will work.
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  #10  
Old 05-16-2013
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isp2952 isp2952 is offline
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Batteries and tires are both something that stir the pot so to speak. It just depends on what sort of traveling lifestyle you do, as to what batteries and tires you should get and how much you should pay for it.

My circumstances at present do not dictate spending the big bucks for batteries at this time. So I cheaped out and got some from O'Reilly's that work just fine. My bus sits in the garage more than on the road. I did get the Michelin tires the last time and I do have buyer's remorse. It was way too much money for a tire that won't get enough miles on it to wear off the white lettering off the tread. I just got ahead of myself when I bought them and didn't think it out well. I knew I would never use them up at that point in our lives. Later on, when Michele can retire, it will be a different story. Right now it just doesn't make sense for me.

There are a lot of great products out there. But for anyone that is a newer Bird owner don't fall into the trap of thinking that the more expensive stuff is better for "your situation". They may be better and I won't argue that but will you be spending the money just to sit in your garage. Just think about it.
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